TIL Desk/National/New Delhi/ Congress president Rahul Gandhi has accused finance minister Arun Jaitley of colluding with a “criminal” and not informing investigating agencies about liquor baron Vijay Mallya’s plan to leave the country. Rahul also questioned Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s role in Mallya’s flight to Britain in 2016. “Why did Jaitley allow Mallya to escape, or was it an order from the prime minister?” he asked.
“This is a clear-cut case of collusion. There is some deal between them. Finance Minister Jaitley must resign and this should be investigated,” he said. Mallya, 62, faces criminal action in India relating to loans taken by his now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines from a clutch of banks. India is seeking Mallya’s extradition, and a London judge is to announce on December 10 whether the government has a case.
Senior Congress leader P.L. Punia said that, on March 1, 2016, when he was in the Central Hall of Parliament, he had seen Jaitley and Mallya talking “discreetly”. “On March 3, we heard from the media that he (Mallya) fled the country on March 2. I have clearly stated about this in each of my interviews with the media. There are CCTV cameras, we can all see that for proof. If I am wrong, I will quit politics,” Punia said. He said the meeting between Jaitley and Mallya lasted for 15-20 minutes.